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Elizabeth Letts Books In Order

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Publication Order of Standalone Novels

Quality of Care (2005)Description / Buy at Amazon
Family Planning (2006)Description / Buy at Amazon
Finding Dorothy (2019)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Picture Books

The Butter Man (2008)Description / Buy at Amazon
My Blue-Ribbon Horse (2022)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Non-Fiction Books

The Eighty-Dollar Champion: Snowman, the Horse That Inspired a Nation (2011)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Perfect Horse: the Daring U.S. Mission to Rescue the Priceless Stallions Kidnapped by the Nazis (2016)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Ride of Her Life: The True Story of a Woman, Her Horse, and Their Last-Chance Journey Across America (2021)Description / Buy at Amazon

Elizabeth Letts is a historical fiction, narrative nonfiction and literary fiction author. She has always loved reading and right from the time she was seven years old, she knew that she wanted to become an author. As such, some of her earliest endeavors included honing her writing skills in preparation for her later career. Once she graduated from college, she went on to volunteer for the Peace Corps, where she taught English at a Moroccan high school. She then came back home to attend the Yale School of Nursing after which she started practicing as a certified nurse-midwife. She became interested in writing when one of her oldest friend told her that she had just written a fiction work. She was awakened from her reverie and knew she had to write soon as it had always been her dream. She was then 40 but thought if Baum could write “The Wonderful Wizard of Oz” at roughly the same age why couldn’t she?

Just like many young girls, Elizabeth was a huge fan of the author Marguerite Henry. She would read the classics such as “Stormy: Misty’s Foal,” “Misty of Chincoteague” and “King of the Wind.” It was from these novels that she also developed a love for riding and made her want to become a write. Letts always knew she was born to be an author and remembers that all she wanted to do was write like Marguerite Henry. She worried that she would write all the beautiful stories while she was still growing up. In the mid 2000s, she went to Yale University and studied creative writing and history. She soon learned that Marguerite had not managed to write all the great stories she wanted to write. It was not long before she published three novels that would be total flops. With her writing career at a crossroads, she found a white and black photo of a thrilling horseback riding stunt. What she did not know was that this is just what she needed to kick start her career.

She had always been a passionate equestrian and had ridden horses as a “three day eventer” ever since she was twelve years old. As such, she was not a stranger to the equestrian world and she dove right in. Elizabeth Letts thought she could write something about horses and started researching. She had experience in historical nonfiction research since she had been a history major at Yale. Moreover, working as a nursing professional made it easy for her to master and present complex information in a succinct manner. Nonetheless, she found the writing of narrative nonfiction a little daunting when she started as she wanted to write historical facts but still make a fascinating story. It felt like she was tearing up an old newspaper into tiny pieces and then trying to make the whole paper again while maintaining the freshness and accuracy. “Quality of Care,” her debut fiction novel was first published in 2005 and “The Eighty Dollar Champion” was published in 2011.

Elizabeth Letts believes that two people were her biggest inspirations and mentors towards a career in writing. One was children’s librarian Mrs. Barclay that was in charge of the Malaga Cove library where she lived, and her mother who is the most voracious reader she ever met. Her mother would often take her to the library since when she could walk. From the time she read “Ann Likes Red,” her first board book followed by Robert L Stevenson’s “Block City” and then “Little House in the Big Woods,” she became fascinated by her favorite authors and the stories they told. Nonetheless, she was a late bloomer and started out as a professional midwife-nurse while raising her children before she became an author. Once she published “Quality of Care” in 2005 she was off to the races and has never looked back since. She currently writes full time from her home surrounded by nature. When she is not writing her novels, she can be found taking long trips on the back roads crisscrossing rural America, singing in a choir or spending time with her children, horses and domestic animals. Nonetheless, her favorite hobby still remains reading, even though she cares a lot about issues affecting children and women.

“Quality of Care” is Elizabeth Lett’s debut novel that tells the story of Clara Raymond. She is an obstetrician that is known for being dedicated, skilled and caring. But then she is caught off guard as a pregnant woman comes into the delivery floor and labor room with minor complications. The woman happens to be her childhood friend Lydia Benson that had once upon a time saved her when she fell of her horse in a terrible riding accident. She has been brought in by Gordon Robinson her husband who had once been Clara’s lover before they had broken things off as he had to leave town. She had never forgotten him though and seeing him had brought her mixed feelings. In the delivery and labor room that night things go horribly wrong and Clara will now have to go back to California to get away from it all. She needs to rediscover hope by revisiting a past that she never once expected to ever go back to. It is a nuanced and involving story that tells of the fragility of the souls and the body and a woman’s search for healing.

“Family Planning,” by Elizabeth Letts tells the story of Charlotte Hopper, a nurse practitioner who works in rural Pennsylvania for a not for profit health center for women. She is charged with ensuring the health of her patients as well as lead the various members of staff under her. Recently, she has had to on more responsibilities as the resident doctor is usually drunk or absent. But then her life which had been going so well begins to unravel as her friend who she had known in college becomes her next door neighbor. She brings to light an old secret that her husband decides to leave town rather than have to deal with such a scandal. Things only get worse when they make a heartbreaking discovery on the grounds. The women who attend the clinic are now suspected of having committed a horrible crime and have to deal with unwanted media attention. Charlotte is caught in an avalanche of small and large tragedies and will quickly have to learn how much of herself to keep in reserve and how much to give.

Book Series In Order » Authors » Elizabeth Letts

One Response to “Elizabeth Letts”

  1. Paula Holzer: 1 year ago

    I read The Ride of Her Life and loved it. I just finished Finding Dorothy and it was wonderful. I belong to a Christian book club and we enjoyed both these books. We are looking forward to reading The Eighty Dollar Champion. Thank you for keeping us supplied with historical fiction.


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